Shopping at H&M Home

We have an H&M store here at the Mall of America, along with every other store a shopper could possibly think of but I let my finger's do the walking online so I would be sure I could get what I wanted.  (Notice I did not say *needed*).  I don't shop often, so I didn't want to come up empty handed after a trip driving to the mall.

My friend Kelly at The Essence of Home turned me on to the fact that H&M Home had some cool looking stuff, for reasonable prices.  Seems every time I find something I like with lettering on it I turn away from the price.  These were reasonable, as in pretty cheap for items with graphics on them.   

And they were items with graphics on them that I actually liked.

I have not done any shopping other than thrift stores and garage sales for quite a long time.  Truth is I just don't need anything.  So this little shopping spree was a big deal for me.

But while I don't need, occasionally I still want.  And I gave in.

Kelly is now on Brawn's list of banned bloggers.

The railway hand towels, etc., landed in the boys bathroom.  No we don't have any sort of a rail road theme anywhere, I just liked the graphics.  Same with the pillow cases, which I'm not sure where I will put.  I got two.

These aqua towels could maybe-sort-of kind-a, be considered needed.  Daughter is redoing her bed and bath in aqua accents.  She loved these, so they are now hers.

While I really like how they look, the towels are not high quality by any stretch of the imagination, but they should look really nice in her bathroom when it's done and hold up decent.  It's not like a family of 8 is showering and drying off with them.

These dish cloths came in sets of two, and they were cheap,  $3.95 a set so I got two sets not really knowing what they would be like.

The graphics on these are awesome and they hold up very nicely.  I like how they look in the sink and I like how they wipe stuff up.  But they are a bit weird, they are like thin dehydrated sponges when they first arrive, stiff enough to put in a frame.  I wish they were larger, the size is a little awkward for wiping down the counters and wringing back out.

I did pick a few things I LOVE.......

This pillow cover is excellent.  So excellent I didn't know where to use it and when I went to fetch it, in search of finding it a home, I discovered it was gone from my chair.  Daughter seemed to think it looked awesome on her bed.  Not sure how anything could look awesome ON her bed, it is usually covered in clothes.

The Olive pillow came in two colors, white with dark graphics, which I loved, but opted to get this darker one.  Again, the price was right and these covers are nice, I will include the link, they are $5.95 {H&M pillow cover}.

But my favorite *want* was the tea towels.

These tea towels are fantastic.  Perfect for making stuff, covering a chair cushion, whatever.  They are generously sized, I have two of them waiting for some great idea to pop into my head.

There was a lot of stuff I wanted, but didn't need, and I didn't give in to it all.  They had some fabric bins with graphics, some bottles with the same graphics, a cute French looking apron, and a bunch of other stuff that you probably don't need either, but just might have the same case of *I wants* that plagued me.

Don't forget to enter the $250 gift card giveaway going on.  Who's gonna win?  Maybe you!

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$250 Gift Card Giveaway To Rock On

How about a Rafflecopter $250 gift card giveaway?  
Target, Michaels, Staples, Visa....

Lots of great bloggers in the bunch to follow and meet as you get your entries going.  Sure 'ya gotta jump through a few hoops, but somebody's gonna win and it won't be you unless you enter.

$250 smackaroos.  I could get my craft on with that much moula. 
So what are you waiting for...... rock click on at the end of this post. 

And because this is a rocking gift card giveaway, I've got a teaser for 'ya. 

Remember the Rock & Roll dresser I made?  
Well it had a secret.  And it wasn't a good one.

After it got all painted up in it's musical coolness, and put in my son's room, we started to notice an odor that was not directly related to my son.   Like ummm.... well maybe animal.  Because it definitely wasn't vegetable or mineral.  

As much as my son loved the dresser it was outta there.  Pppppppppppp Ewwwwwwwww.  Now I know why it was out at the curb with a FREE sign.

Little Rocker said ok, fine, now you have to make me another one just like it.  So stay tuned for the encore.

Rock & Roll Dresser #2....In Concert Soon.

Oh yeah Jenny, I got your number..... again.  #6 kid, #4 son is calling.

And if all that isn't cool enough for you, stop over at Nellie Bellies where I'm guesting today.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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Norway has a Kodak Moment

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.  I would have to agree.

It's even sweeter if you like the imitation better than what it is imitating.

And such was the case when I opened an email from Norway and saw this.....

via En Vintage Drom

The writer told me how my dresser inspired her to make one of her own.

Now I want to copy the copy.

And how about those old time graphics on the side doors?  Pretty nice.

The blog is in Norwegian (that's what they speak in Norway right?) but the email came to me in English.

It wasn't the first copy of my Kodak Dresser.

This one is mine.

Another lady emailed me with this one that she made.....

I walked by my suddenly boring brown bedroom dresser and gave it a sideways glance today.  I could paint it white and put black letters on it........


Stop back in on Monday and enter a Rafflecopter giveaway for a giftcard.

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Initial, Name & Date Wood Plaque

I have this handsome son.  Well, I have 4 handsome sons really, but for this story we will focus on one, son #2, which is child #3.  (If you need a reminder, I have six kids, I squeezed a couple daughters in between the boys).

He loves to travel and for a while I was worried he was gonna fall in love and live far far away.  Some kids best friends live next door, some live in the next country.  Such is the case for son #2, so he travels a couple times a year to Guatemala.  

When he traveled for a recent wedding he needed to have a gift small enough to travel with him, so thanks to mom and her silhouette cameo I came up with the perfect gift.

At Christmas time I made a couple of wooden plaques with the last names, initials, and year my two oldest kids were married.

Yes I have blocked out their full last names, and yes they tested my sanity by both getting married the same year - five months apart to be exact.

I made these on Christmas Eve and because Annie Sloan chalk paint dries so fast, they took me no time at all.

When #2 son needed a gift I whipped one up the day before he had to fly out.

I don't remember exactly how the custom in Guatemala works regarding taking the last names, but it has to do with both sets of parents and the couple ends up with two last names, hence the two initals, the B and the R.

Ana and Rodrigo loved their gift from son #2.  They told him at the mall there in Guatemala, a personalized gift like this is very expensive.

Yeah I knew that when I made it at the last minute!

I whipped up a tag and we wrapped it in twine.  It fit flat in his suitcase and the dudes in Customs and Border Protection didn't have to unwrap it.

The Process:
Paint board base color.  Stick on letters.  Paint 2nd color over letters.  Peel letters off.  Sand.  Distress.  Wax.

 Linking up with....
Christina @I Gotta Create and the Wildly Original Party
Pinterest Blitzen @DebbieDoos 
Freaking Awesome Fridays @MellywoodsMansion

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Old Door Headboard

Wanna see the talents of daughter #2? 

Or should I say more talents.  You can see some of her painting talents where she made her mama cry making a sign for me, or her famous one of a kind lampwork bead cake testers .... 

But to see the parts of her room that didn't have wet towels and clothes laying all over, you have to go visit Shannah at JustUsFour

You will find the headboard Beth made from an almost 100 year old door, complete with the key in the keyhole, the $3 Goodwill lamp she painted with a chevron print, and her first try at making string art.

What her room lacks in having a clothes free floor, it makes up for on the top half.

This IS my party face.
Happy dog day to Riley @WhileWearingHeels
but Mo wants to know who that other doggie dude is with his girl?

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Duluth, North Shore of Lake Superior

Since I haven't finished a project I am working on, and can't even finish my laundry, I decided to take a vacation in my mind.  I went back to May when we took the two youngest on a four day trip to Duluth, and the North Shore of Lake Superior.

Lake Superior Shore as seen from Split Rock Lighthouse
First of all I have to say after many years of taking 6 kids on trips, it still feels a little out of the ordinary to travel with only two.  For this mom of many taking only two along, it's sort of.... well.... a piece of cake.

The Duluth weather in May can be unpredictable.  We were lucky, it was sweatshirt weather and sunny half the time, but as any history buff knows, Lake Superior can turn in the blink of an eye, often for the worst.

Killer Whale as Seen from Coldstone Creamery booth.
Sometimes the lake even tosses forth a killer whale to a Coldstone Creamery.  This was the first time my two sons and Brawn had been to Coldstone.  Not sure they will remember the ice cream, but the Orca maybe.

View of Split Rock Lighthouse
Most of our travels involve heading out of state to a beach or tropical destination when it's freezing here, so taking the scenic route in Minnesota was a lot of fun for us. 

We headed to Split Rock Lighthouse and Gooseberry Falls and stopped in at everything between Twin Harbors and Minneapolis that looked interesting.

A vivid memory of our last trip to Duluth was having our just about four year old throw a full blown temper tantrum in the train Depot because her siblings left on a second cable car ride and she didn't make it back aboard in time.

The Depot conductor came over to see if she lost a limb, then as politely as he could say it, told me to ask her to stop crying.

I asked.
She screamed louder.
He asked us to leave as her wails echoed through the whole place.
I took her to the restroom as folks stared.
I smiled pleasantly back at them.
If they only knew I was contemplating tying her to the train track with a gag in her mouth. 
Split Rock has a tour about life here in the days when the light house was in use.  I loved going back in time and seeing how they lived.

Gooseberry Falls had these trees along the shore with the roots exposed from the water eroding them.
They were really creepy looking to me, yet interesting.  I kept waiting for a troll to step out from behind one.

There is an upper and a lower falls.

And of course my family wanted to take the hike alllllllll the way around.
With miles of path, some gravel, some boardwalk.
And 10,000 stairs.
Thankfully I had on my most favorite shoes in the whole world.  They were a gift from #2 daughter......

 My all terrain Dansko's.

I'm no hydrologist, but I concluded that the yellow and rust color of the water was due to the fact we were on the Iron Range, and iron ore probably causes this.
I know this because if I leave iron in water, that's what happens.

I'm Einstein I tell 'ya.
At about this point in our walk, while I was enjoying the view, I determined I was approximately half way around, and worried I would starve or pass out from dehydration.
Dansko's don't fail me now.

But I stayed strong, I knew what was down the road......

And there's nothing like a looooonggg hike to work up an appetite and a hankering for pie.

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Vintage Car Patina

My family loves vintage cars.  Of course vintage cars to my boys seems a lot newer to me than what I think of as old cars.   Old cars to me.... are reeeeeallllllllly old cars to them.

Last summer I posted my ideas of how to decorate with the oldies but goodies;
Hot Cars in the Summertime.

This summers post is all about the patina.  How the weathered boys of summer really look.  The ones that have been around the block a time or two.... and it shows.

I savor everything about old cars.....
the chrome details,
the colored leather seats,
the buttons on the radios. 

I enjoy the way some of these vintage vehicles transport my mind to another time.

Like growing up in Southern California, which meant cruising Van Nuys Boulevard - the real-life American Graffiti.

And the patina.

This post is dedicated to the patina on these bad boys of days gone by, and embracing the rust and wear on a well loved body.   (Sort of like a handsome boy I know - circa 1955).

No photo-chop-ing, no photo special effects.

No reason to digitally alter any of these beauties, it's the age, the raw natural wear and tear on them, that makes them appealing. 

Tough old rusty guys

Patina that is classy and flawed

With worn areas that still shine.

Brawn has yet to put his woodworking skills to use on restoring a car.

But something tells me he'd like too.

The real bad boys of summer

The kind who put an antique trunk in the back of a Chevrolet pick up truck and throw down a few beers.... a few A&W Rootbeers.  In a frosty mug of course.

My kind of boys, my very own bad boys of summer.

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